Former Phuket prison to transform into spooky tourist attraction

Phuket Prison, photo by Phuket PR.

An old Phuket prison no longer housing inmates is now set to become a spooky tourist attraction, providing visitors with a “Twilight Zone” experience. Phuket Prison was built in Phuket Town about 120 years ago, and Phuket officials now plan to turn it into a ‘live museum’ to teach both tourists and locals about its history.

In addition to the fun new tourism experience, the prison will also become a site for training inmates in vocational skills, according to the director of the Chanthaburi Prison, Krisana Thipayachon. Krisana said at a press conference yesterday that the prisoners will get training in traditional massages, embroidery, and operating drink stalls.

“The prison will also serve as a source of education for those interested in correctional work…”.

Phuket’s Vice Governor Anuphap said the Phuket Provincial Administration Organisation will support a budget to renovate the prison into an ecotourism hotspot. The date that the prison will officially open as a tourist spot has not yet been announced.

Phuket Prison was emptied of its prisoners in 2020. That year, over 2,000 male prisoners were transferred to the new Phuket Provincial Prison in Thalang district. Phuket Prison then served as a ‘Covid Care Centre’ in 2021. It served people who tested positive with antigen tests, but were asymptomatic.

Phuket’s city mayor said the Phuket Municipality is also supporting the project, as part of a larger plan to improve the area. The new move to transform Phuket Prison comes on the back of a recent wave of plans to improve the island province’s economy, and landscape. Last month, Phuket provincial governor Narong presented a plan for 10,000 new minimum wage jobs that would focus on cleaning Phuket.

Meanwhile, Phuket officials have also organised several events and food festivals to help bring income to local farmers and sellers.

SOURCE: The Phuket News | The Phuket News

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Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.